Exploring the perceptions of quality nursing care among nurses working in two district hospitals in Rwanda.
It has been reported for over the last decade that the quality of nursing care provided towards patients has decreased tremendously. The literature shows the impact of poor quality nursing to patients and assumes the influence of nurses’ perceptions of quality nursing care on its delivery. However, studies about such perceptions are still few in Rwanda. Aim: The purpose of this study was to explore the perceptions of quality nursing care among nurses working in two district hospitals in Rwanda. Methodology: A non-experimental exploratory descriptive design which was quantitative in nature was used. A self-report questionnaire comprised items related to socio-demographic characteristics of participants, perceptions of quality nursing care, nurses’ role in continuous quality improvement and factors affecting the delivery of quality nursing care. The sample was obtained through a purposive non-probability sampling of the nurses (n=150) who were available during data collection from 16 to 28 October 2011, with a return rate of 110 (73%) of completed questionnaires. Results: The findings from demographic data indicated that many of nurses were young, with 48.2% falling into the 20 to 30 year old bracket and the majority of the participants (83.3%) were enrolled nurses. Many of the participants were new to the nursing profession, with 47.2% falling into the 6 months-5 years working experience bracket. This study suggests that nurses had an appropriate perception of quality nursing care, as evidenced by the mean score of 4.183 (SD: .5741), related to nurses’ understanding of quality nursing care with mean score of 4.137 (SD: .5763) for the perceptions of the delivery of quality nursing care. The role played by nurses in continuous quality improvement was evident, but it was constrained by the factors related their nursing practice environment, including: shortage of nurses, lack of time, heavier workloads, and few opportunities for advancement. Conclusion: In summary, this study provided insights into nurses’ perceptions of quality nursing care, and their current ongoing endeavours to provide quality improvement in spite of challenges in their workforce environment. This study has described the challenges which interfere with the delivery of quality nursing care that need to be addressed so that patients may benefit from evidence-based care.
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